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How to deal with a veiled blackmailing client?

I was recently awarded a job to write 4 articles (500 words each). I sent the client the first draft(s), he requested revisions for one of the articles. I wrote 750 words instead of our initially agreed 500-words to cover the topic. This client requested a revision for a section which was 50-80 words among other things, I deleted the entire section because I was supposed to deliver 500-words.

Even after my revision and removal of the mentioned article, I'm still delivering 40% more word count than we initially agreed upon but this employer insists that I revise this particular section. I've declined his request stating that I've already written more than what we've initially upon, and the section doesn't affect the flow of the article. 

Now I'm afraid this employer will leave a negative feedback and hamper my JSS. How do I deal with a situation like this?

Community Member

I'm trying to figure out how this is veiled blackmail.

Amanda S wrote:

I'm trying to figure out how this is veiled blackmail.

My feeling is she believes the client may leave her negative feedback if she refuses. She could be right, but there's nothing that can be done about that now. 


Bia, you have the right to refuse further work, especially if a certain number of expected revisions were not outlined in the job offer. But please know that, yes, the client may leave negative feedback for any of them.


DON'T mention feedback to the customer at all.


There are a few things you can do:


1. Politely tell the client you're happy to make this final revision. Make sure you say "final." Be very cheerful about it, then see whether he is satisfied. And then after you two close the contract, never accept an offer from this dude again.


2. Put your foot down and refuse to make any more revisions. I wouldn't mention the word count at all (that's just me - others might); I would say you have already made X amount of revisions and unfortunately you are out of the time you allocated to the project. He might leave you a negative review, sure, but he might anyway.


3. Make as many revisions as he wants until you can close the contract and be rid of him. 


4. Take the largest risk (this would be my last choice, but everyone feels differently about this kind of issue) and close the contract yourself. 


DO NOT mention reviews, good, bad, or any adjective whatsoever. Just don't mention the word. Keep your communications on Upwork.


Next time, consider only accepting hourly contracts OR specifying (politely! - and just one time, briefly) that you are bidding for, say, "1 X 1000-word article with a maximum of two revisions." 


Community Member

You can not avoid JSS change.

Full refund and contract cancel allow you to avoid public feedback, but client able to left private feedback. It will be applied to JSS

I will advise you to complete the contract, receive the money and give the appropriate feedback to the client. If the client wants to spoil your JSS then he will do it anyway. Even free work will not protect against this. I had cases when I succumbed to blackmail, gave full refund but the client dropped JSS after that.

Community Member

I don't think the client has the right to request revisions, and writing more words than agreed doesn't revoke that right. Maybe trim it down to 500 and incorporate his feedback in that section.


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